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  • FIRST POST
    • SeekingRedemption
    • By SeekingRedemption 10th Jul 17, 10:26 PM
    • 20Posts
    • 38Thanks
    SeekingRedemption
    Recovery from reckless spending
    • #1
    • 10th Jul 17, 10:26 PM
    Recovery from reckless spending 10th Jul 17 at 10:26 PM
    Hi all,

    I've been occasional reader of this forum for quite a while, but I've never logged on. I've decided to sign up because I recognise that I need to turn my life around, and that I need support & advice.

    I've always been a very straight-laced person. Always worked full-time, sensible with money, honest, loyal...etc, and I always pitied people who seemed to make a mess of their lives, without ever thinking it could happen to me.

    A couple of years ago, I was made redundant from a job I'd been in for years. I quickly got a new job, which I enjoyed, but I found the change in circumstances overwhelming, and went through a period of anxiety and depression. Shortly afterwards, my wife of 12 years (and the mother of my children) told me she didn't love me anymore and that she wanted me to move out. Then shortly after that, I was diagnosed with a serious health problem (which I won't go into).

    Over the last 12 months, whilst continuing to 'function' (ie. performing ok at work, being present for my children when needed) I've gone completely off the rails. Drinking heavily (usually alone), unable to stop, stumbling out of nightclubs into daylight. Waking up with no recollection of the previous night, but with strip club receipts for insane amounts of money stuffed into my pockets (I'd never attended, or even had the desire to attend strip clubs prior to this period). Gambling heavily, more drinking...etc Basically living like some sort of 70s hellraiser. And everytime I sobered up and spent 3-4 days feeling overwhelmingly depressed, I'd rationalise my actions as those of a man 'going through a hard time' and resolve that it was the last time. But it never was.

    Well, this time I know it has to stop. I'm almost £20k in debt, and whilst I can afford the replayments at the moment, I know if it carries on much longer I'll get myself in serious financial trouble, or worse.

    I'm going to do an SOA, I'm going to rigorously plan a budget, and I'm going to claw my way out of this mess I've got myself into. I'm also going to see my GP about talking therapies for my depression (I'm already on medication). I am thoroughly ashamed of myself, and the guilt I feel about the money I've squandered may never leave me. But I don't want this to be the end of my story, I want a happy ending.

    If you got to the end of all that, thank you. I hope you can be a source of advice and support, and that I in turn can support and advise others when I reach the other side.

    Cheers

    Danny
Page 2
    • zippygeorgeandben
    • By zippygeorgeandben 15th Jul 17, 12:14 AM
    • 570 Posts
    • 665 Thanks
    zippygeorgeandben
    I'd consider starting your own debt free diary too. Not necessarily for others to read but putting down your own thoughts for the day down on screen.
    It's also a reminder of your journey and you'll keep looking back at the first post you made in it and thinking how far you've come!
    End Sep 2016 End June 2017
    £8236.57 £5989.54
    (Tesco 4.8%) £222.61pcm
    £6185.75 £1165.92 (Zopa 4.0%) £62.25pcm

    £5344.50
    £3170.04 (Sainsburys 0% until 06/19) £71.32pcm
    £2000.00 £1600.01 (Sister 0%) £133.33pcm

    Total debt
    £19.766.82 £13,505.42 Original DFD May 2019.
    • SeekingRedemption
    • By SeekingRedemption 15th Jul 17, 10:06 AM
    • 20 Posts
    • 38 Thanks
    SeekingRedemption
    Definitely will, cheers. I've got a plan of action this weekend:

    - Shift the TSB CC and overdraft onto the Barclayard. It'll cost around £120 in fees, but will save me a fortune in interest, with 0% until Oct 18.
    - Continue paying the loan, and throw everything else at the Barclaycard to clear the balance before next Oct.
    - Live thriftily until the end of July (when I get paid) using the proceeds from selling books & CDs, and that'll give me my 'debt at its worst' figure
    - Do a proper, detailed spending diary throughout August - documenting every penny - so I can do a proper SOA and calculate an accurate debt free date

    Another thing I'm considering is Uber Eats. It's just been rolled-out in my area, and I've noticed fellas on bicycles outside McDonalds doing home deliveries. I'm a lapsed cyclist, so it'd give me a flexible way to get fit again and earn extra money, which would be thrown exclusively at the debt.
    • Lucylocks
    • By Lucylocks 15th Jul 17, 12:10 PM
    • 52 Posts
    • 126 Thanks
    Lucylocks
    Not heard of uber eats but sounds like a plan to me; keep you occupied, get you fit which will resolve low feelings plus you may get free food. Result!
    LBM 28/3/17 £24,971 28/6/17 £14,376 42% paid
    • SeekingRedemption
    • By SeekingRedemption 15th Jul 17, 12:19 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 38 Thanks
    SeekingRedemption
    Cheers. Yeah, I think it's just a Deliveroo type thing. I'm just keen to pay the debt off quickly (i.e. 2 years rather than 5) so I need to not only drive down my spending, but also increase my income.
    • Ilona
    • By Ilona 15th Jul 17, 12:56 PM
    • 1,824 Posts
    • 6,368 Thanks
    Ilona
    Hi. I'm going to be the odd one out here, and risk getting slated. I haven't had contents insurance for years. All my furniture, and most of my possessions are second hand, picked up from car boot sales, charity shops, given to me, and skip diving. To me they are just stuff. I take the attitude that I am responsible for what is in this house, if anything needs replacing, such as broken appliances, I have money put away for that. All the money I would have paid in insurance is now in my emergency fund. Basically I self insure.

    It depends how you value what you have, and if you need to be surrounded by the latest, the modern, the most up to date, and the fashionable, or if you don't mind living with the basics. Looking around my living room I have a second hand four piece suite bought for £50 off a friend. A dining table free, the people next door threw it out. I'm sat on an office chair someone gave me because it was broken, I mended it. A sideboard I bought 30 years ago from a friend for £5. A set of drawers I found in a skip. A Dyson found in a skip. An old desk computer bought new 12 years ago, it's still working. Nearly all my clothes come from charity shops.

    I know if I lost everything I have enough in the emergency fund to buy what I need, because my needs are simple. I know not everyone wants to take this chance, but as I said, my stuff is just stuff.

    Ilona
    I love skip diving
    • Debtslayer
    • By Debtslayer 15th Jul 17, 12:57 PM
    • 302 Posts
    • 463 Thanks
    Debtslayer
    Sounds like you've made a good plan. Well done and good luck earning the extra income. If you keep up this determined attitude you'll soon clear the debt
    Current Mortgage: £114,794.64
    Current Mortgage end date: 2036
    Target Mortgage end date: 2026
    Overpayment Target for remainder of 2017: £2,000

    MFW No 124
    • Debtslayer
    • By Debtslayer 15th Jul 17, 1:00 PM
    • 302 Posts
    • 463 Thanks
    Debtslayer
    Great advice on the phone, cheers. Is it not illegal to put my wife or parents on the insurance to save money? Just would be worried about it invalidating my insurance in the event of a claim.
    Originally posted by SeekingRedemption
    No, not as long as you are putting them on as additional drivers. It's illegal when people claim someone else is the main driver and they're not.
    Worth ringing your insurance to see if it will come down
    Current Mortgage: £114,794.64
    Current Mortgage end date: 2036
    Target Mortgage end date: 2026
    Overpayment Target for remainder of 2017: £2,000

    MFW No 124
    • sourcrates
    • By sourcrates 15th Jul 17, 1:57 PM
    • 11,193 Posts
    • 10,856 Thanks
    sourcrates
    Hi. I'm going to be the odd one out here, and risk getting slated. I haven't had contents insurance for years. All my furniture, and most of my possessions are second hand, picked up from car boot sales, charity shops, given to me, and skip diving. To me they are just stuff. I take the attitude that I am responsible for what is in this house, if anything needs replacing, such as broken appliances, I have money put away for that. All the money I would have paid in insurance is now in my emergency fund. Basically I self insure.

    It depends how you value what you have, and if you need to be surrounded by the latest, the modern, the most up to date, and the fashionable, or if you don't mind living with the basics. Looking around my living room I have a second hand four piece suite bought for £50 off a friend. A dining table free, the people next door threw it out. I'm sat on an office chair someone gave me because it was broken, I mended it. A sideboard I bought 30 years ago from a friend for £5. A set of drawers I found in a skip. A Dyson found in a skip. An old desk computer bought new 12 years ago, it's still working. Nearly all my clothes come from charity shops.

    I know if I lost everything I have enough in the emergency fund to buy what I need, because my needs are simple. I know not everyone wants to take this chance, but as I said, my stuff is just stuff.

    Ilona
    Originally posted by Ilona
    I think the value in contents insurance is if there was a fire, and you lost everything, your insurance would replace everything for you, cooker, fridge, you have to think about the kitchen units too, cupboards, sink unit, oven, when you add up every last item, down to the knives and forks, even if you went out and got them all second hand, its still a large cost, theirs bathroom units, toilets, the cost of redecoration in every room, it can cost a pretty penny to replace everything within your four walls.
    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Credit File And Ratings, and
    Bankruptcy And Living With It, boards. I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly, and I can move and merge posts there.
    Board guides are not moderators and don't read every post. If you spot an abusive or illegal post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com. Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com.

    For free debt advice, contact either : Stepchange, National Debtline, or, CAB.
    For Legal advice see : http://legalbeagles.info/
    • Lucylocks
    • By Lucylocks 15th Jul 17, 3:43 PM
    • 52 Posts
    • 126 Thanks
    Lucylocks
    Contents insurance also can provide cover for alternative accommodation- including emergency accommodation. If it all goes up in smoke it will provide you with funds to sort somewhere to live. It is essential- please don't scrimp on this
    LBM 28/3/17 £24,971 28/6/17 £14,376 42% paid
    • SeekingRedemption
    • By SeekingRedemption 16th Jul 17, 5:55 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 38 Thanks
    SeekingRedemption
    Just sat and did a meal plan for the week ahead (first time ever). Went to the shops, bought everything I needed for £10! This is a game changer. I had no idea I could eat so cheaply, and this was from Tesco, so I'm sure that tenner could go a bit further at Aldi. Exciting!
    • Heidistar
    • By Heidistar 16th Jul 17, 7:28 PM
    • 4 Posts
    • 5 Thanks
    Heidistar
    Hi Danny,

    Good luck on your new journey!

    You should see a Solicitor about your circumstances. It may be that your wife can claim benefits and/or tax credits now that she is living alone, and you would then be able to pay less and have more towards your own living expenses.

    Although it is expensive to see a Solicitor, you can probably find a one hour advice session for a limited fee and it can be well worth it and help you know what to expect going forwards.

    Heidi
    • zippygeorgeandben
    • By zippygeorgeandben 16th Jul 17, 9:01 PM
    • 570 Posts
    • 665 Thanks
    zippygeorgeandben
    Well done with the meal plan! Keep this enthusiasm going!
    End Sep 2016 End June 2017
    £8236.57 £5989.54
    (Tesco 4.8%) £222.61pcm
    £6185.75 £1165.92 (Zopa 4.0%) £62.25pcm

    £5344.50
    £3170.04 (Sainsburys 0% until 06/19) £71.32pcm
    £2000.00 £1600.01 (Sister 0%) £133.33pcm

    Total debt
    £19.766.82 £13,505.42 Original DFD May 2019.
    • SeekingRedemption
    • By SeekingRedemption 17th Jul 17, 11:36 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 38 Thanks
    SeekingRedemption
    A productive half hour today. Managed to get my car insurance down from £113 per month to £38 per month (with a one-off cancellation fee of £52). Result!

    Today was also a NSD. If I cycle to work for the remainder of this week, then I won't have to spend penny until Saturday!
    • tlc678910
    • By tlc678910 18th Jul 17, 7:53 PM
    • 465 Posts
    • 853 Thanks
    tlc678910
    Hi,
    I was going to ask if you could get yourself involved in a sport and then I saw you were into cycling. Could you join a local club?

    Depending on your health a running club, cycling club, golf, fishing whatever you enjoy could give your social scene and your wellbeing a lift. There may be some costs involved (for some sports costs will be minimal) but if it saves money on drink and other destructive behaviour it will pay for itself.

    Some running clubs run in different sets from the walk/run lot to the more competitive people so it's worth asking if your worried you're not fit enough - maybe cycling clubs are the same?

    I gather open water swimming is great for depression - you can use Google to find lifeguarded venues - a lake near us has a Saturday morning and a Wednesday night for £5. I also read that a rock climbing course can be as effective as anti depressants so worth a try if you're feeling brave (although not the cheapest option).

    You have been through a lot but perhaps now it's time to do something positive just for you?

    Good luck
    • Cariad9
    • By Cariad9 18th Jul 17, 10:01 PM
    • 37 Posts
    • 30 Thanks
    Cariad9
    Just thought I'd jump in on 2 points...

    1) completely understand what you're going through. As a recent divorcee myself I can behave in a very similar way (not the strip clubs as much lol! But can go on clothes spending binges. I think it's my way of re-inventing myself. Also get you with the alcohol consumption :/)

    2) insurance underwriter here. Although adding another named driver isn't strictly speaking fronting, it is a failure to present the risk fairly, so your insurer could still void the policy. Be careful...
    • SeekingRedemption
    • By SeekingRedemption 18th Jul 17, 10:35 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 38 Thanks
    SeekingRedemption
    Thanks Cariad. I ended up switching insurance companies and saving myself a fortune, and that's without any named drivers, so I'm pleased that I've saved money without taking any risks with cover.

    Yeah, the drinking can easily get out of hand. The man who's unhappy at home is always the last man standing. My mates would head home, and I'd stay out drinking alone until the small hours. On one of these occasions, someone beckoned me into a strip bar with a voucher for a free drink. Slippery slope.

    Luckily, I was never the sort of guy who needed a drink to get through the day. I was (and am) a binge-drinker. If I go out for one, I can't stop. And not in a fun way. So now I just avoid going out to the pub at all. It's been over a week since I've had a drink and I feel good. I've always been a bit obsessive, so I've taken to this money-saving thing with gusto.
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 19th Jul 17, 11:22 AM
    • 7,450 Posts
    • 39,066 Thanks
    EssexHebridean
    Hi. I'm going to be the odd one out here, and risk getting slated. I haven't had contents insurance for years. All my furniture, and most of my possessions are second hand, picked up from car boot sales, charity shops, given to me, and skip diving. To me they are just stuff. I take the attitude that I am responsible for what is in this house, if anything needs replacing, such as broken appliances, I have money put away for that. All the money I would have paid in insurance is now in my emergency fund. Basically I self insure.

    It depends how you value what you have, and if you need to be surrounded by the latest, the modern, the most up to date, and the fashionable, or if you don't mind living with the basics. Looking around my living room I have a second hand four piece suite bought for £50 off a friend. A dining table free, the people next door threw it out. I'm sat on an office chair someone gave me because it was broken, I mended it. A sideboard I bought 30 years ago from a friend for £5. A set of drawers I found in a skip. A Dyson found in a skip. An old desk computer bought new 12 years ago, it's still working. Nearly all my clothes come from charity shops.

    I know if I lost everything I have enough in the emergency fund to buy what I need, because my needs are simple. I know not everyone wants to take this chance, but as I said, my stuff is just stuff.

    Ilona
    Originally posted by Ilona
    I think it's important to point out that the vast majority of folk reading on here will not be in a position to be able to essentially "self insure" in this way - as others have said, even the cost of emergency accommodation, cleaning up a fire/smoke damaged property, complete redecoration, carpets etc, refitting things like kitchen & bathroom and replacement even of just basic furniture - I bet that won't get you any change out of 30k at the absolute best. Most people just aren't in a position to have that sort of money saved - and personally even if I had, I'm not willing to risk money that we would have saved for our futures on needing to be spent in this way. - my £85 a year (I think it was last year) premium is money well spent IMO.

    It's also worth remembering that if you were in the position of losing everything bar what you stand up in, you probably won't have the luxury of time to be able to shop around for charity shop bargains or to wait for friends to be throwing stuff out - in itself, needing to sort things out fast can often cost more!

    SR that's great work on the car insurance - what a saving!
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£412.21
    • SeekingRedemption
    • By SeekingRedemption 19th Jul 17, 11:10 PM
    • 20 Posts
    • 38 Thanks
    SeekingRedemption
    Thanks EH.

    Just finished my third NSD in a row, and I'm on for a fourth tomorrow. I think it's possibly the first time I've done it in my life.
    • Ilona
    • By Ilona 20th Jul 17, 9:29 AM
    • 1,824 Posts
    • 6,368 Thanks
    Ilona
    Thanks EH.

    Just finished my third NSD in a row, and I'm on for a fourth tomorrow. I think it's possibly the first time I've done it in my life.
    Originally posted by SeekingRedemption
    Well done, go for it. One step at a time and you will get there.

    Ilona
    I love skip diving
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